As a reporter, I always tried to remind myself that I had access to places and people most Americans will never see or meet, and not to take that responsibility lightly. It was a privilege to cover the White House, to carry a notebook through the Rotunda. And it is a privilege to be the neighborhood newspaper. And my philosophy has always been to attempt to take readers and viewers with me: inside the Iowa caucuses, on the road with Rep. Michele Bachmann or dishing about the gossip and debating the best tchotchkes handed out at the Democratic National Convention.
I’d like that to translate to this newsroom. My promise to you is to attempt to be as transparent as possible in how we run Roll Call. If we make a decision that you want to question, let me know, and I’ll answer you in this space. We’re going to be experimenting with new ways of opening up the newsroom to help you understand why we cover what we cover and how we inform readers day in and day out.
Let me know: What can we do better? What features do you miss? How do you want to engage with us?
In its 59 years in operation, Roll Call has moved around a bit: from Yudain’s congressional office to a spot across the train tracks, to 50 F St. next to the Irish Times, to our current home at 77 K St., just up the road from Union Station, and a few stops in between.
And we haven’t always done the best job of explaining changes within the organization to this community, but we’re turning that around.
For example, as a loyal reader, you surely must know that everything found at rollcall.com is free, right? And that you can download our Roll Call app in a split second to make sure you get breaking news alerts and the latest news from our team. Do you follow @rollcall on Twitter?
These are simple but important questions to ask as we grow our business in this evolving news universe. We’re listening.
Taking a look at the bigger picture, we know we can all do better in what some people refer to as “#thistown.” We can be better public servants, better friends, better journalists. That’s what I am striving for in my newsroom. Let me know how we’re doing.
Call me at 202-650-6838. Email me at email@example.com. Tweet at me @cbellantoni. Join us Tuesday night. My door is open to the Roll Call staff, and to you, Speaker John A. Boehner, and you, Rep. Ami Bera, and you, Neil Newhouse.
You live and work and play here, and so do we.
Christina Bellantoni is Roll Call’s editor-in-chief.
Terri Henderson, 6, center, whose mother is El Salvador, attends a rally with members of Congress at Union Station's Columbus Circle to announce the Restore Opportunity, Strengthen, and Improve the Economy (ROSIE) Act on July 29, 2014. The legislation provides incentives for government contractors to pay a living wage and other benefits that would help low-income workers.